20/11/20: New Burrell Shop aims to develop sustainable solutions in feeding families

Burrell Centre pictureA new community shop has been officially launched in Thetford to ensure good quality, affordable food is available to people living close by.  The Burrell Shop, which has been created in collaboration with Norfolk Community Foundation, opened in November in the Charles Burrell Centre on Staniforth Road. This new collaborative project has received £40,000 of funding from Breckland Council, part of its wider £1 million scheme by the Council to support the most vulnerable in the Breckland community

Families with children at the schools on the Barnham Cross estate were the first to try the shop which works on a membership basis.  After showing proof of address and paying a one off joining fee of £3.50 per household, members can buy fresh, frozen, dried and tinned food, alongside toiletries, nappies and personal care items provided by charities such as Fareshare, HiS Church, the Country Food Trust and local partners.  All products are provided at a hugely reduced cost and there are usually some special offers and free items. Membership will be widened to the entire Burrell Ward in the new year.

Billie Lawler is the shop manager: "Now, more than ever, people in our community are struggling financially. If you have been furloughed and are receiving just 80% of your usual wage, it can be impossible to manage," she says. "The Burrell Shop will help people stretch their income further to ensure no one goes hungry. The shop stocks a fantastic range of food items and household essentials, and so much more besides.  We plan to introduce recipe cards and cooking advice and have lots more ideas to help our local families!"
The Burrell Shop has been made possible with support and funding from a range of partners including Breckland Council, local people that care about their community and national funders such as Feeding Britain.  Norfolk Community Foundation is now looking to move quickly to establish similar community supermarket hubs in key areas across the county.

Cllr Sam Chapman-Allen, Leader of Breckland Council, commented: "As a council, we are fully committed to supporting everybody across our district and I'm delighted to be working with community organisations like the Charles Burrell Centre to support local residents suffering from financial hardship. We have invested £40,000 to get this innovative scheme up and running, which is part of our wider £1 million support package for vulnerable groups in Breckland. I'm delighted the project has got off to such a strong start and sincerely hope to see it go from strength to strength and inspire similar ventures across Breckland and the county."

If you live in the Burrell Ward and would like to find out about shop membership, please visit between 10am and 12noon on weekdays, plus Monday evenings from 4pm to 6pm, or email billie@charlesburrellcentre.org.uk.

The project is part of a wider programme from Norfolk Community Foundation "Surviving the Covid Winter" appeal, which has been launched to encourage people and businesses in Norfolk to support the continuing work of local charities and voluntary organisations to ensure no one goes hungry this winter. 

"Food insecurity has shot up due to the economic fallout from Covid-19, as people's income reduces," says Claire Cullens, chief executive of Norfolk Community Foundation. "In the first lockdown, 25% of our emergency funding was awarded to food banks and pop-up food distribution networks."

"We would urge anyone who can afford to give, even a small amount, to get in touch with us," says Claire. "Perhaps you receive a winter fuel allowance that you don't need and would like to help someone else to stay warm?  Your experience of lockdown may not have been too bad, and you feel that you'd like to support your community.  Every pound that we raise will enable charities to provide a vital lifeline to people in Norfolk this winter."

"Sadly, economic indicators suggest we are on the brink of a deep and prolonged recession and we cannot rely on crisis measures such as foodbanks and community pantries to keep people fed and well into the new year.  Having to accept food handouts on an ongoing basis is no good for anyone's self-respect or health.  That's why we are developing a range of projects that give people control and choice when it comes to feeding their families and themselves."

How to help the NCF Surviving Winter Appeal:

•    Visit www.norfolkfoundation.com  and click on DONATE NOW

•    Call us on 01603 623958 to make a card payment

•    Send a cheque to 
Norfolk Community Foundation
5th Floor St James Mill, Whitefriars
Norwich, NR3 1TN

•    Or scan our QR code and make a payment via your smartphone.

Last updated: 01/12/2020 17:04:54